Tightening work schedules and increasing job volumes have once again facilitated entry of a new equipment segment into the Indian construction sector. This time, it is mobile concrete equipment. The machine claims to offer cost advantage primarily through cutting down on additional deployment of equipment at the job site.
Mobility is the foremost advantage claimed to be offered by the mobile concrete equipment manufacturers. This allows the equipment easy transportation from one job site to another, and catering to multiple project requirements.
Mobile concrete equipment manufacturers explain, mobility feature, is most vital element of the equipment, In tandem, it also provides numerous additional benefits to contractors. This makes deployment of these equipment conducive at various job sites.
Maxmech provides range of mobile concrete equipment. This includes, truck mounted mobile concrete batching and mixing plant with a capacity range of 15m3/hr and 20m3/hr, horizontal mobile cement and flyash storage silo with capacities ranging from 40, 60 and 100 tons. As per Mr. Surelia, "MHC 60 horizontal mobile cement plant silo cuts down on setting up of separate cement godown at the construction site, thus saving on space. The machine prevents bare minimal cement wastage due to leak proof design. The silo provides high mobility for site transfer due to skid mounted design." Maxmech also manufactures mobile concrete batching plants with capacity range from 18 to 36 m3 per hour. The equipment have features consisting, control panel equipped with PLC touch screen type HMI. The control can store different mix design with all parts recording upto 50 lac cum.mtr production output. The machine has cement feeding hopper on one rear end of the chassis below to which a screw conveyor is fitted which charges cement into turbo mixer. Maxmech's mobile batching plants come with heavy duty tubular section chassis on which 3 or 4 aggregates silos are bolted. As per Mr. Surelia, Maxmech has recently launched truck mounted mobile cement storage silo. The company offers its service to its customers by providing erection, installation and commissioning support through its service engineers located pan India.
Apollo Infratech manufactures ATP 20, 20 m3/hr concrete output batching plant. The equipment comes with two types of mobility options, tow bar system one fabricated axle and one swivel mechanism for front axle. The equipment can be towed with a JCB backhoe loader, tipper tractor etc. The other mobility option is trailer horse lowing system including king pin reconditioned axle with leaf spring air braking system. ATP 20 has standard supply of components involving, compartment type aggregate storage bins, weighing bin with conveyor, screw conveyor, microprocessor bases control panel etc. As per Mr. Patel, "ATP 20 comes with newly designed pan mixer with side scrappers for better mixing. The scrappers additionally facilitate cleaning of the pan by preventing concreting from piling up in the pan, thus increasing its life."
Apollo which produces mobile horizontal cement and fly ash storage silo with a capacity of upto 50 tons also manufactures AMP 150, portable mobile concrete mixer with pump. The mixer has a drum capacity of 500/350 liters with a mixer output of 15m3 per hour with 32 RPM. Mr.Patel mentions, "the machine is competitive in reducing costs as it is a combination of drum mixer and pump with a single engine providing drive to the pump and the drum." Apollo provides customer support through its pan India dealership network. The Gujarat based company stocks its components with the dealers based on the equipment population.
Portable mobile concrete mixers are also manufactured by Gamzen Plast Private Limited. Gamzen produces mobile mixers with both equipped with reversible electric and diesel motor operated dial gauge. The mixers have drum length varying from 1590 mm to 2370 mm, water tank capacity of 180 litres with rotary speed of mixing drum between 16/20 RPM. The mixers are available with concrete output ranging from 9m3-20m3/hr.
Mobility is the standard advantage provided by the mixers. The portability advantage, from the application point of view is another advantage. Based on portability, the mixers can operate in construction sites located in difficult access such as city centres, renovation of residential buildings at housing societies.
Mr. Kudva, defines Conmat mixers as "stationary cum mobile mixers." He informs, "the most notable feature of our concrete batching plant are that they can be promptly erected and dismantled at the construction site at ease. This is so because the plants have all welded frame structure and come fully assembled from factory in three parts. It can be installed at the site with an ordinary yard crane, requiring between 24 to 48 hours for installation."
As per Macons, the MA-Series plants are designed to suit the remote sites. The plants have a rigid construction of the main chassis making them rugged, pan type mixer for continuous mixing, replaceable liner types and tips in the mixer, fully automatic with electronic weighing of aggregates. The mobile batching plants have inbuilt water and additive tank. As per the company, the MA-Series plants are equipped with accurate controls for consistent quality of concrete and gives output as per the ratings of the plant.
Macons also offers semi-mobile plants. The equipment claim to be compact and provide higher output with better output accuracy. According to Macons, the semi-mobile plants do not require any civil foundations. The complete plant is pre-wired and pre-tested in the factory itself. This enables negligible site erection activities. The unit needs only to be plugged and the plant can start working. The compactness of the plant enables easy handling and movement during transportation.
The Gujarat based company has recently entered into a license agreement with Dumec SRI-Italy for manufacturing of self–loading transit concrete mixers. The self–loading mixers would be available between 1m3-4m3 capacities. The mixers will come with a slewing drum. It would feature a four wheel drive and a four wheel steering, 1800 reversible driving post, electronic weigh batching unit and 35% gradability. Macons provides its customer service support through its network located in Hyderabad, Bangalore, Delhi, Mumbai, Bhubaneswar, and Kolkata.
The construction applications of mobile mixers, are essentially for construction of concrete roads, small culverts and canals, renovation work in building and roads, road dividers, windmill foundation work, small drains and other municipal works. Mobility feature of these equipment provides cost benefits. Equipment manufacturers mention, though the initial costs of the batching plant in terms of its deployment is on the higher side at par with its static plant counterpart. However, the transportation and installation costs benefits are lower when the equipment are taken to the second different job sites. This is so because the contractors become familiar with the installation and transportation process of the mobile plants while taking the machine to the next job site gained by the experience from the first site in course of its installation and transportation.
Truck Mounted Plants: A Newer TrendWhile mobile concrete batching plants and portable mixers have heralded a new trend in concrete mixing, it is truck mounted mobile concrete and batching plants that is set to become a notable trend setter in the segment of mobile concrete equipment.
Truck mounted mobile concrete batching plant is a much newer concept that is looking to make its inroads in Indian construction market. Introduced in the country by Gujarat based concrete equipment manufacturer, Maxmech, mobile truck mounted mobile concrete and batching plants seems to have a good marketing potential. This is while taking into account when the contractor has to cater to multiple concreting jobs at quicker intervals.
Mr. Advani informs, "The International Mobile Mixer drives power and efficiency from the hydraulic pump. This hydraulic pump can be driven from main chassis engine or D.G set. This mechanism provides excellent attractive efforts with good fuel efficiency and meets most stringent norms.
The mixer can effectively blend, mix and produce right quality of concrete as and when needed at the construction site itself according to required design mix whether it is M10, M20, M30."
As per the working principal of the International Mobile Mixers goes, aggregate, cement, sand, fly ash and other additives are taken out from different hopper mounted on an automotive chassis are taken out through various calibrated gate valves and mixed in an "Auger Style Mixer." Calibration could be done at the site depending upon available material. For various grades of concrete suggested mix is also available on a ticker.
Mr. Advani says, "The International mobile Mixer is a very versatile machine of its kind. It can deliver up to 45 CUM/Hr or can be used as transit mixer having capacity of 8 CUM. To have a reliable mixer which can effectively blend, mix and produce right quality of concrete as and when needed at the construction site itself."
The advantage of the International Mobile Mixers he adds, "In traditional way of concreting, transporting of concrete is dependable on time and distance factor. However, in International Mobile Mixer since every ingredient has its own storage location the machine is independent of these two important factors. So characteristics of the concrete remain unchanged in International Mobile Mixer."
Given its features International Mobile Mixers claims to use various types of aggregates, sand and fly ash available economically at the construction site. The machine claims to provide nil wastage of concrete at site and can deliver desired concrete strength.
From the operation perspective, according to Mr. Advani, "The machines have low maintenance cost due to less moving parts, low initial investment due to less number of machineries. Additionally, the machine is low in operational cost due to less number of people required. The mixers make use of available space at the construction site. Furthermore, it requires minimum clean up and wash out compared to traditional batching." International Mobile Mixers are available in 5 CUM, 6 CUM and 8 CUM models as per carrying capacity goes. However, all the models can deliver up to 45 CUM per hr.
The International brands of Mobile Mixers are exclusively distributed and serviced in India Electromag has six sales and service offices across the country involving, Mumbai, Delhi, Kolkata, Chennai, Bangalore and Pune.
Truck mounted mixers are required for construction work as similar to the ones catered by the mobile concrete batching plants.
However, Mr. Savanur informs, "The PTO mechanism is only available with MAN and Volvo chassis with 300 horse power for the Greaves transit mixers. This makes the PTO mixers comparatively more expensive than the Indian chassis." He mentions, that "the reason to opt for Volvo or MAN chassis is because, Indian, Tata or Leyland chassis have the available horse power ranging between 150 hp-180 hp making them inadequate in terms of driving force for the PTO mechanism.
Advancements in transit mixers have been introduced by Schwing Stetter India Private Limited. During Excon'09 Schwing Stetter launched transit mixers with concrete pump driven by PTO. The capacity of the mixers are in the range of 6m3/hour, 8m3/hour, 9m3/hour and 10m3/hour. The 6m3/hour, 8m3/hour, and 10m3/hour mixers are driven by MAN chassis while 9m3/hour mixer is driven by Volvo chassis. The 6m3/hour mixer is positioned for small size construction projects having an execution time frame between 2-3 days. The pump of the equipment works on rock valve technology.
As per the functioning of the equipment goes, a conveyor is attached to the self moving chassis belonging to the placer. The chassis is driven by a diesel engine. The concrete placers are available in three models having an output of 25m3/hr and 50m3/ hour. CMAC also distributes Esquire manufactured portable mobile mixers.